In a film including the A-list of Arkham Asylum's most deranged and dangerous, it's fitting that there is an ominous shadow cast over Suicide Squad by the presence of Batman. The crime-fighting vigilante is the thorn in the side of the film's leading supervillains — including The Joker and Harley Quinn — often going to great lengths to keep them in line.
We've only seen limited glimpses of Batman in the promotional material for Suicide Squad so far, including some brief but breathtaking clips of him rescuing Harley Quinn and piggy-backing Joker's candy-colored car. In a recently released TV spot, Batman is back, although again only appearing briefly.
It's as close to a blink-and-you'll-miss-it moment you're ever going to get; in the midst of mayhem, violence and the occasional good humored gag, we see The Dark Knight using his trendy gadgets to hoist himself away from sight. And that's it. He's gone.
A Welcome Return For Affleck's Batman
Ben Affleck's second Batman appearance may not result in masses of screen time, but his actions will undoubtedly send a ripple through the DCEU. The fluorescent limelight will be elsewhere — with contrasting reports suggesting anything from a brief cameo to "a lot more" than we expect — but that won't stop fans eagerly scanning the shadows for Bruce Wayne's alter ego.
Man of Steel (2013) and Batman v Superman (2016) both failed to hit the sweet spot, but Affleck's Batman was one of the stand-out positives in the latter; although darker and more brutal, it's an interpretation of the character that is enthralling to watch. He's uncompromising and lethal, almost to the same degree as the Suicide Squad themselves.
This is a Bruce Wayne who is battle-hardened and weary. A Bruce Wayne who doesn't think twice about killing criminals and pops sleeping pills and consumes alcohol to aid a good night's sleep. But it's also a Bruce Wayne who will be an interesting antidote to the mix of extrovert and attention seeking felons.
We'll See A "Freaking Scary" Version Of Batman
While Batman was dark in BvS, it looks like Suicide Squad could take things to even murkier territory. Told from the perspective of the bad guys, the film makes Batman himself a villain. In an interview with Collider, director David Ayer said:
"If you look at what Bruce Wayne has done in creating the Batman persona, his idea was to terrorize criminals. It's sort of psychological warfare against criminals. This wraith that comes in the night and attacks and pulls criminals from society. For the first time, we're seeing Batman from the point of view of the criminals and he's freaking scary."
So not only are we going to see the collection of DC's finest supervillains strut their stuff on screen, we'll also get to see Batman through a different lens, terrorizing the hell out of them. If that's not enough to get completely hyped, I don't know what is.
Suicide Squad is released on August 5, 2016.